29 Forasmuch then as we are the offspring of God, we ought not to think that the Godhead is like unto gold, or silver, or stone, graven by art and man's device.
Many times in religion verses secularism, we assume an even playing field.
We think that there is no objective record of God and that everything about God must then be blind faith.
When we look at the scriptures, they are automatically seen as myth, with no historical basis. But in reality the Bible is not just some book of fairy tales and fantasy and the authors of scripture had no intent of believing fantasy either.
2Timothy 4:2 Preach the word; be instant in season, out of season; reprove, rebuke, exhort with all long suffering and doctrine. 3 For the time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine; but after their own lusts shall they heap to themselves teachers, having itching ears; 4 And they shall turn away their ears from the truth, and shall be turned unto fables.
Colossians 2:18 Let no man beguile you of your reward in a voluntary humility and worshipping of angels, intruding into those things which he hath not seen, vainly puffed up by his fleshly mind,
Titus 1:13 This witness is true. Wherefore rebuke them sharply, that they may be sound in the faith;
14 Not giving heed to Jewish fables, and commandments of men, that turn from the truth.
Galatians 1:11 But I certify you, brethren, that the gospel which was preached of me is not after man. 12 For I neither received it of man, neither was I taught it, but by the revelation of Jesus Christ.
So if a myth was ok in the minds of the apostles and prophets to make up.... Why would they tell people that myths are wrong? And why would they be believed? People at the time knew about myths and that they should be rejected. The Greeks eventually rejected mythological answers for the beginning of the world.
"Pre-Socratic philosophy is Greek philosophy before Socrates (but includes schools contemporary with Socrates which were not influenced by him)."
"The Presocratic philosophers rejected traditional mythological explanations of the phenomena they saw around them in favor of more rational explanations. These philosophers asked questions about "the essence of things":
From where does everything come?
From what is everything created?
How do we explain the plurality of things found in nature?
How might we describe nature mathematically?"
Wikipedia pre-socratic philosophy
So if the pagan histories were admitted to be myth. Then the only History left is the biblical record. Now many in the past have argued that Genesis was nothing more than a myth. Yet these arguments did not happen until the modern era.
Luke 3:38 Which was the son of Enos, which was the son of Seth, which was the son of Adam, which was the son of God.
Here we have a genealogy, which lists God at the head of it. This is important, as the Bible has now concluded God to be manifested immanently in space and time.
Acts 17:28 For in him we live, and move, and have our being; as certain also of your own poets have said, For we are also his offspring. 29 Forasmuch then as we are the offspring of God, we ought not to think that the Godhead is like unto gold, or silver, or stone, graven by art and man's device.
So here Paul gathers pagan confirmation of the historicity of God. If mankind is the offspring of God then He is a historical character. In fact God interacts with historical characters
Genesis 2:16 And the Lord God commanded the man, saying, Of every tree of the garden thou mayest freely eat:
So, here we see God in the process of communicating to Adam
Genesis 2:2 And on the seventh day God ended his work which he had made; and he rested on the seventh day from all his work which he had made.
Here we see God as a male person. This means that God is personal, if you are a person, you are either male or female. "It" is not a person. God needs to be personal to interact with humanity and be part of history.
Genesis 3:8 And they heard the voice of the Lord God walking in the garden in the cool of the day: and Adam and his wife hid themselves from the presence of the Lord God amongst the trees of the garden.9 And the Lord God called unto Adam, and said unto him, Where art thou?
10 And he said, I heard thy voice in the garden, and I was afraid, because I was naked; and I hid myself.11 And he said, Who told thee that thou wast naked? Hast thou eaten of the tree, whereof I commanded thee that thou shouldest not eat?12 And the man said, The woman whom thou gavest to be with me, she gave me of the tree, and I did eat.13 And the Lord God said unto the woman, What is this that thou hast done? And the woman said, The serpent beguiled me, and I did eat.14 And the Lord God said unto the serpent, Because thou hast done this, thou art cursed above all cattle, and above every beast of the field; upon thy belly shalt thou go, and dust shalt thou eat all the days of thy life:15 And I will put enmity between thee and the woman, and between thy seed and her seed; it shall bruise thy head, and thou shalt bruise his heel.
This is a very interesting account because it not only has God acting, but it has him dialoguing with 3 other persons.
Did the Jews really think this was historical?
Here I see confirmation in the writings of the Jewish historian Flavius Josephus.
"At that time all living creatures spoke a common language, and a serpent maliciously lured a woman into tasting of the tree of wisdom, promising a blissful existence equal to that of a god. She tasted the tree's fruit, and persuaded Adam to do so also. Now aware that they were naked, they covered themselves with fig leaves. When God entered the garden, Adam tried to excuse himself by blaming Eve, and she accused the serpent. God told Adam that the earth would no longer produce anything of itself except in return for grinding toil. He punished Eve through childbirth, and deprived the serpent of speech, putting poison under it's tongue. He also removed it's feet so that it would have to wiggle along the ground. Then God removed Adam and Eve from the garden to another place." Jewish Antiquities: Beginnings trans. Paul L Maier
Obviously, Josephus assumed this to be true history and assumed Genesis to be a historical record,
At this point we have to remember that was not observed with an atheistic worldview. the naturalistic worldview has to be forced upon history. However, theism was the natural view.
It is definitely sure that the Old Testament is a complete history.
As far as Biblical history and the ancient texts the Bible...
"It is the most
"Civilization, as historians identify it, first emerged between 5,000 and 6,000 years ago when people began to live in organized communities with distinct political, military economic and social structures. Religious, intellectual, and artistic activities also assumed important functions in these early societies."
"Although Historians use documents to create their pictures of the past, such written records do not exist for the prehistory of humankind. Consequently, the story of early humanity depends on archaeological and more recently biological information, which anthropologists use t create theories about our early past. Although modern science has fostered the development of more precise methods, much of our understanding of early humans relies upon considerable conjecture."
Comprehensive Volume WORLD HISTORY by William Duiker and Jackson J. Spielvogel
Monotheism is historic amongst the most ancient societies
"One, the maker of all things, the Spirit, the hidden Spirit, the maker of Spirits. He existed in the beginning, when nothing else was. What is created He made after he came into being. ... No man knows how to find Him; His name is a mystery and is hidden. His names are innumerable. He is truth, He lives on truth, He is the king of truth. He is life, through Him man lives; He gives life to man, He breathed life into his nostrils . . He Himself is existence; He neither increases or diminishes. He made the universe, the world, what was, what is, and what shall be. ... He hears him who calls on Him, He rewardes his servants, those who acknowledge Him He knows, He protects His followers."
E.A. Wallis Budge, Osiris (New Hyde Park, N.Y: University Books, 1961) p. 357.
The Chinese God was known as "Shang di" (note the similarities to "El Shaddai" one of God's names in genesis) meaning "Lord above" or "Supreme Lord"E. Allie and M. Frazer, Chinese and Japanese Religion (Philadelphia, Westminster Press, 1969) p. 268.
" In the beginning, who was born the Lord the sole Lord of all that is who made the earth, and formed the sky, who gives life Who gives strength, whose bidding gods revere the ONLY GOD."
Rig Veda excerpt from Selwyn Gurney Champion & Dorothy Short, Readings from World Religions (Greenwhich, Conn., Fawcett Publ., 1951) pp. 26-27.
Mosaic authorshipLate in the seventeenth century Jesuit and deist rationalistic scholars developed a conspiracy theory known as the Documentary Hypothesis. Where they assumed that Moses was not the author of the Torah and that the establishment of the Pentateuch was an evolution of Jewish traditions of four sources (Jehovist, Elohist, Deuteronomist and Priestly (JEDP)) which were compiled over several centuries.
The Bible places Moses as the Torah author.
The torah itself
Exodus 17:14 And the Lord said unto Moses, Write this for a memorial in a book, and rehearse it in the ears of Joshua: for I will utterly put out the remembrance of Amalek from under heaven. "
Exodus 24:3 And Moses came and told the people all the words of the Lord, and all the judgments: and all the people answered with one voice, and said, All the words which the Lord hath said will we do.4 And Moses wrote all the words of the Lord, and rose up early in the morning, and builded an altar under the hill, and twelve pillars, according to the twelve tribes of Israel. " 7 And he took the book of the covenant, and read in the audience of the people: and they said, All that the Lord hath said will we do, and be obedient. "
Numbers 33:2 And Moses wrote their goings out according to their journeys by the commandment of the Lord: and these are their journeys according to their goings out. "
Deuteronomy 31:9 And Moses wrote this law, and delivered it unto the priests the sons of Levi, which bare the ark of the covenant of the Lord, and unto all the elders of Israel."19 Now therefore write ye this song for you, and teach it the children of Israel: put it in their mouths, that this song may be a witness for me against the children of Israel."
22 Moses therefore wrote this song the same day, and taught it the children of Israel."
24 And it came to pass, when Moses had made an end of writing the words of this law in a book, until they were finished,"
Exodus 25: 16,21-22Deuteronomy 28:58; 29:20, 21, 27, 29; 20:10, 11.
Other scriptures in the OT
2 K. 21:8, 1 Ch. 15:15, 1 Ch. 22:13, 2 Ch 24:6, 2 Ch. 33:8, 2 Ch. 34:14, Ne. 1:8, Ne. 8:14, Ne. 10:29, Mal. 4:4
Other scriptures in the New Testament
Matt. 8:4, Matt. 19:8, Matt. 22:14, Mark 1:44, Mark 7:10, Mark 10:4, Luke 5:14, Luke 20:37, Luke 24:27, John 1:45, John 5:46, John 7:19, John 7:22, John 8:5, Acts 3:22, Acts 15:21, Acts 26:22, Rom. 10:5, Rom. 10:19, 2 Cor. 3:15, Heb. 9:19
Scripture Does not fit into the JEDP categories!
Elohim shows up in J passages:
Jehovah shows up in P passages before Exodus 6:3
Genesis 17:1, 21:1
Jehovah occurs in E-source passages
Genesis 21:33, 22:4, 22:11, 28:21, Exodus 18:21, 18:8-11
Now the main case for the documentary hypothesis is the internal evidence of differences in the text marked by the different names of God. Supposedly different authors are adding upon another over the centuries. they are distinguished by their name for God. The fact that this claim is not consistent in the scriptures devastates the theory. If the pattern is not consistent then how can they claim any type of evolution?
Matthew 19:3 The Pharisees also came unto him, tempting him, and saying unto him, Is it lawful for a man to put away his wife for every cause? 4 And he answered and said unto them, Have ye not read, that he which made them at the beginning made them male and female, 5 and said, For this cause shall a man leave father and mother, and shall cleave to his wife: and they twain shall be one flesh? 6 Wherefore they are no more twain, but one flesh. What therefore God hath joined together, let not man put asunder. 7 They say unto him, Why did Moses then command to give a writing of divorcement, and to put her away? 8 He saith unto them, Moses because of the hardness of your hearts suffered you to put away your wives: but from the beginning it was not so.
mark 10: 3 And he answered and said unto them, What did Moses command you? 4 And they said, Moses suffered to write a bill of divorcement, and to put her away. 5 And Jesus answered and said unto them, For the hardness of your heart he wrote you this precept. 6 But from the beginning of the creation God made them male and female. 7 For this cause shall a man leave his father and mother, and cleave to his wife; 8 and they twain shall be one flesh: so then they are no more twain, but one flesh. 9 What therefore God hath joined together, let not man put asunder. 1
Is Genesis 1 and 2 the same account?
As we see here, Jesus is twice recorded as answering a question by quoting from genesis 1 and genesis 2 side by side. This implies that he read them from the same scroll.
If we have The Lord Jesus putting the 2 passages together then the duel creation theory falls apart. If Jesus were only a prophet, this would still be proof, but since he is the LORD, then it is set in stone for any christian.
Where is the manuscript of J?E?P?D? Nothing!!
Who are the sources? Nobody!
What does history say?
"But because almost all our constitution, depends on the wisdom of Moses, our legislator. "
"Now when Moses was desirous to teach this lesson to his countrymen, he did not begin the establishment of his laws after the same manner that other legislators did: I mean, upon contracts and other rights between one man and another, but by raising their minds upwards to regard God, and His creation of the world" Josephus The Antiquities of the Jews Preface
Moses was highly educated
"Therefore the child being thought worthy of a royal education and royal attendance. was not, like a mere child, long delighted with toys and objects of laughter and amusement, even those who had undertaken the care of him allowed him holidays and time for relaxaton, and never behaved in any stern or morose way to him; but he himself exhibited a modest and dignified deportment in all his words and gestures, attending dilligently to every lesson of every kind which could tend to the improvement of his mind (21) and immediately he had all kinds of masters, one after another, some coming of their own accord from neighboring countries and different districts of Egypt, and some being even procured from Greece by the temptation of large presents. But in a short time he surpassed all their knowledge, anticipating all their lessons by the excellent natural endowment of his own genius; so that everything in his case appeared to be an [r]ecollecting rather than a learning, while he himself also, without any teacher, comprehended by his instinctive genius many difficult subjects;(22) for great abilities cut out for themselves many new roads to knowledge." C.D. Yonge The works of Philo pg. 461
Now while it is possible for Philo to have been embellishing, we must remember that Philo is 2,000 years closer to the life of Moses and He is a Jew living at the time in Egypt before the Alexandrine library was burnt down. Thus he has quite the scholarly advantage to be authoritative on the subject he speaks.
I deal with this in detail in my recent book "A new look at an old word".
But essentially the scriptures teach that they would be preserved and the Jews have kept them in the hebrew masoretic text.
“in 143 cases of transliteration from Egyptian, Assyrian, Babylonian and Moabite into Hebrew and in 40 cases of the opposite, or 184 in all, the evidence shows that for 2300 to 3900 years the text of the proper names in the Hebrew Bible has been transmitted with the most minute accuracy. That the original scribes should have written them with such close conformity to correct philological principles is a wonderful proof of their thorough care and scholarship; further, that the Hebrew text should have been transmitted by copyists through so many centuries is a phenomenon unequalled in the history of literature.”32 He reasons further that since it can be shown that the text of other ancient documents has been reliably transmitted and that the text of the Old Testament has been accurately transmitted for the past 2,000 years, we may rightly suppose that the text of the Old Testament has been accurately transmitted from the very beginning " Dr. Robert Dick Wilson A Scientific Investigation of the Old Testament pg.71,74-76
Literary genre: historical Narrative
Many have argued lately that Genesis is not a historic narrative but in fact complex poem. This is exemplified in the literary framework hypothesis. In this interpretation the 1st chapter is a poem that displays didactic parallelism. Thus the purpose is to give an allegorical message as to the philosophical differences with pantheism.
"Probably, so far as I know, there is no professor of Hebrew or Old Testament at any world-class university who does not believe that the writer(s) of Genesis 1–11 intended to convey to their readers the ideas that:
"creation took place in a series of six days which were the same as the days of 24 hours we now experience
the figures contained in the Genesis genealogies provided by simple addition a chronology from the beginning of the world up to later stages in the biblical story
Noah’s flood was understood to be world-wide and extinguish all human and animal life except for those in the ark."James Barr, Oriel Professor of the interpretation of the Holy Scripture, Oxford University, England, in a letter to David C.C. Watson, 23 April 1984.
Now Old earth creationist fired back that they had Hebrew scholars who did interpret Genesis figuratively at that time. However, we must remember that those scholars were huddled in Evangelical Seminaries away from the secular population of scholars whom Barr worked with.
"Genesis is peppered with ‘And … and … and … ’ which characterises historical writing (this is technically called the ‘vav—ו, often rendered as waw—consecutive’). "https://creation.com/is-genesis-poetry-figurative-a-theological-argument-polemic-and-thus-not-history"Because the /wa-/ or /wǝ-/ was naturally interpreted as meaning "and" in addition to a signal for a different tensal interpretation of the forms, the waw-consecutive forms tended to be used in narrative, particularly in continuing rather than starting a story—precisely the places where the use of "and" would make sense."https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Waw-consecutive
So we see in monotheism it is judeo Christian Monotheism which has told us HIStory which is OUR story.